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After season of improvement, Seahawks’ O-line a question heading into wild card

Seahawks RG J.R. Sweezy (foot) is questionable for Saturday's game. (AP)

The Seahawks defense will have their work cut out for them trying to contain the league’s most productive running back this Saturday, but it’s Seattle’s offense that has 710 ESPN Seattle’s Jake Heaps concerned.

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“Dak Prescott has really started to catch fire, and when you couple that with a strong running game from Ezekiel Elliott it creates problems for the Seahawks,” Heaps said during Thursday’s segment of Blue 42 on Brock and Salk.

“So, the Seahawks are going to want to establish the line of scrimmage and contain Elliott as quickly as possible.

“But the bigger concern for me is more on Seattle’s offensive side of the ball. And maybe it’s a little bit of recency bias, but that offensive line being able to contain Dallas’ defensive line and their pressure package is a big concern for me. If the Seahawks O-line can keep Russell Wilson upright and give him time to survey the field, especially on third down, then I think the Seahawks don’t just win the game – they can control the game.”

The Seahawks’ offensive line has shown marked improvement from last season. Pro Football Focus ranked the unit 17th overall in pass-blocking efficiency, up from 29th in 2017. Seattle also led the league in rushing and saw its first 1,000-yard rusher since 2014.

They struggled through their most recent outing, though. Quarterback Russell Wilson was sacked six times in a game that found the Seahawks short both starting guards.

Thankfully for Seattle, the team will see the return of right guard D.J. Fluker (hamstring) Saturday. Things are a bit murkier for left guard J.R. Sweezy (foot), who is listed as questionable and will be a game-time decision. Even without the injuries, the group faces a tough challenge against a Cowboys team that ranks fifth in rushing defense.

More Seahawks coverage:

Heaps’ Film Room: A look at Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett’s ‘perfect’ season
How Schottenheimer, Carroll got on the same page about the Seahawks’ offense
Seahawks’ wild-card matchup: 3 Dallas Cowboys to watch
Moore: Don’t expect a repeat of Seahawks’ Week 3 win over Cowboys

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